Monograph No. 15
EDUCATION OF DEFECTIVES
EDWARD ELLIS ALLEN
Principal of the Pennsylvania Institution for the Instruction of the Blind,
EDUCATION OF DEFECTIVES
EDWARD ELLIS ALLEN
Principal of the Pennsylvania Institution for the Instruction of the Blind,
Digitized by the raefnet Archive
\ :i a ran ■
EDUCATION OF DEFECTIVES
Systematic care of the defective classes began in America
in iS 1 5, when a young theological student, Thomas Hop-
kins Gallaudet, started for Europe to study methods of
teaching the deaf and dumb. A school for this class was
opened in 1817, one for the blind in 1831, and one for the
feeble-minded in 1845 — practically fifteen years apart. In
each case the first schools were in New England, the second
in New York, the third in Pennsylvania ; and these schools
followed one another quickly. All started in the face of
more or less distrust as to their feasibility. At first all were
experimental, being started through private initiative. A
few pupils were taught and exhibited before the amazed
public, when in the case of the deaf and the blind private
funds in abundance were contributed and the schools quickly
established as private corporations. In the case of the feeble-
minded the first school to be incorporated was a public
organization — that is, it was supported by the state.
Before 1822 the state had not been educated to the point
of supporting schools for the special classes, but by 1848 it
was ready to see its duty towards even the idiotic, though
wealthy people were by no means prepared to contribute
directly to schools for them.
The three states named having led the way, the move-
ment spread quickly into Ohio, Kentucky, Virginia and Illi-
nois — in almost identical order for each special class. Here r
however, the schools for the three classes arose as state insti-
tutions. It had become an accepted part of public policy
for the state to provide a means of education for all her
children. The superintendents of the early schools for the
deaf and dumb were generally clergymen ; those of the
blind and the idiotic, generally physicians. The institutions
were necessarily boarding schools ; and the early ones were
4 EDUCATION OF DEFECTIVES [772
established as a rule in or near the state capitals, chiefly
that their achievements might be kept before the members
of the legislatures, on whose practical sympathy the continu-
ance of the schools usually depended.
The large private or semi-public institutions are confined
to the eastern states, where the movement began. Their
support comes chiefly from private bequests and the interest
on invested endowment funds. All, however, receive what
is termed state aid, and all make annual report to the state
legislatures, to the commissioners of public charities or of
public education, as the case may be. All these institutions
are governed by honorary boards of trustees or managers,
who appoint the superintendent or principal. In the semi-
public organization the managers form a self-appointing,
close corporation ; in the public, they are appointed usually
by the state governor, by whom they may also be removed.
The semi-public institutions are usually well endowed.
Their expenditures are, therefore, not limited by legislative
grant ; and, moreover, these institutions are free from politi-
cal interference, an interference which, in the case of several
of the state organizations, has seriously affected from time
to time the efficiency of the institutions themselves. As a
rule, the institution plants are large and well equipped.
Even when within the built-up cities the buildings are sur-
rounded with ample lawns and playgrounds. The appro-
priations of money are generous, whether the schools are
public or semi-public. The earlier institutions were built
on the congregate plan ; the later and those that have
been rebuilt have generally adopted the segregate or cot-
The pupils are not committed to these institutions, but
are admitted or rejected by the boards of trustees on the
recommendation of the superintendents.
The early institutions for all three classes of defectives
began purely as schools. And all those existing to-day,
except those for the feeble-minded, discharge or graduate
all pupils after these have completed the course of instruc-
773] EDUCATION OF DEFECTIVES 5
tion. With the feeble-minded this plan was found to be
inexpedient, for reasons which will be stated later.
A very recent movement, started by the instructors of the
deaf, is the affiliation of the educators of the defective
classes with those of the national educational association. It
is being more and more recognized that the line between a
defective and a normal child cannot be drawn hard and fast,
and that many a child who appears dull and stupid in school
is in some measure defective. Hence, these special schools
afford fields of most helpful suggestion to teachers of ordi-
nary children. All persons intending to make teaching a
vocation should become acquainted with these schools and
It is interesting to note that systematic work for the deaf
and dumb, the blind, and the feeble-minded began in France,
and that to France America sent its early teachers to study
methods and ascertain results.
About the middle of the last century three schools for the
deaf and dumb were opened in Europe, one in France, one
in Germany, and one in Scotland. Though they sprang up
at about the same time they were yet wholly independent in
origin. In Paris the Abbe de l'Epee having observed two
deaf-mute sisters conversing by means of gestures, seized
upon the idea that in gesture language lay the secret of
instructing the deaf and dumb. He therefore elaborated a
system of gesture signs and made it the medium of instruc-
tion in the school which he started. Heinicke in Dresden
and Braidwood in Edinburg simply adopted articulate
speech as the language of man and taught their pupils
through it, requiring them to speak and read the lips of
others. Thus arose the two important methods of deaf-
Reports of the successes, chiefly in the British school, hav-
ing reached America, several parents of deaf-mutes sent
their children to Scotland to be educated. These deaf
6 EDUCATION OF DEFECTIVES [774
children returned no longer as mutes ; they were able to
converse readily by speaking and lip reading. One of these
parents was so delighted with his boy's schooling that he
published a book in London and wrote articles for the New
England periodicals, with the intention of arousing interest
in the new work. This man also took steps to ascertain the
number of deaf-mutes in Massachusetts. Another man in
Virginia, some of whose relatives had attended Braidwood's
school, even opened a little school for deaf and dumb pupils
in his state, employing as its teacher one of the Braidwood
family, who had come to America for the purpose of continu-
ing in the profession of his family here. This was in 1812.
The school was the first of its kind started in America.
However, it was soon given up, as was a similar effort in
New York, where a clergyman undertook to instruct several
deaf children whom he found in an almshouse.
Though the events above touched upon seemed to result in
little, they yet had great effect in directing intelligent atten-
tion to this field of work. They constitute its preliminary
It happened in Hartford, Conn., that there was a physician,
one of whose little daughters had become deaf. Why could
not this child be educated as well as her hearing sisters ?
With this thought he spent some eight years in agitating
the question of starting a school for deaf children. In 181 5
money enough was raised in a single day to defray the
expenses of sending a teacher abroad to study methods. A
young graduate of Yale college and of a theological semi-
nary was chosen as the teacher to go. This was Thomas
Hopkins Gallaudet, who was destined to become the founder
of deaf-mute instruction in America.
Of course he went to Great Britain. He proposed to
study the only method that Americans knew about. But
the doors of the British schools were closed to him. He
found the science and art of teaching the deaf regarded as
a business monopoly, whereas he had expected to find it
conducted from his own motive of philanthropy. After
775] EDUCATION OF DEFECTIVES 7
wandering about there for nine months he gave up hope of
acquiring the Braidwood method and accepted an invitation
to study methods at the Paris school. At this school he
spent the three remaining months of the year, a time far too
short in which to acquire the special language of gesture
signs. Hence, he induced a deaf-mute, who was teaching in
the school, to accompany him to America. This man was
the brilliant and accomplished Laurent Clerk, who became
an engine of power for establishing schools for deaf-mutes
in our country. Thus was the French method or the sign-
language method brought to America. It was improved and
further systematized by our early teachers and in this form
was the basis of instruction in all our schools for half a
During the absence of Dr. Gallaudet, influential men of
Hartford had secured from the state legislature the incorpo-
ration of the Connecticut asylum for the education and
instruction of deaf and dumb persons. Upon his return he
and Mr. Clerk traveled for eight months among prominent
cities in behalf of the cause of the deaf. The exhibition of
Laurent Clerk alone helped the cause as nothing else could
have done. On April 15, 181 7, school work began at Hart-
ford with seven pupils. During the year 33 pupils came.
This was the first permanent school in the country. While
in other countries similar schools had no reliable basis of
support, the founders of our schools immediately established
theirs on a permanent basis. Private aid was necessary at
first, but no sooner had the feasibility of the work been
shown than public moneys were granted.
In this year the Connecticut asylum changed its name to
the American asylum at Hartford for the education and
instruction of the deaf and dumb ; for it was then supposed
that one school could accommodate for many years all the
pupils of the country who would attend school. But interest
in the schooling of deaf-mutes had been aroused in other
places. In 18 18 a school was opened in New York under a
teacher from Hartford; and in Philadelphia, where Dr. Gal-
8 EDUCATION OF DEFECTIVES [776
laudet and Mr. Clerk had gone to obtain aid for the Hart-
ford school, an humble storekeeper by the name of Seixas
began to teach, in 1819, a little class of deaf pupils, and he
was so successful that an institution was organized in 1820
with Seixas as first teacher and principal. In a very few
months he was succeeded by a permanent principal from
Hartford. Back in 18 19 Massachusetts had provided an
appropriation for the education of 20 indigent pupils at
Hartford, and in 1825 New Hampshire and Vermont adopted
the same policy. " Other states soon followed this good
example. Thus, through the efforts of the founders of this
[the Hartford] school, the humane, just and wise policy of
educating deaf-mutes at the public expense was firmly estab-
lished in this country, and has been adopted by almost every
state in the union. In some of the western states means
for the education of deaf-mutes are secured by constitutional
provision. This has put the schools for deaf-mutes in the
United States on a better basis, financially, than those in
any other part of the world." 1
Only two years after the founding of the Pennsylvania
school, Kentucky followed with its institution, being the
first to be supported by a state. The act establishing it
limited the pupils at any one time to 25, and their term of
instruction to three years. In fact limits of this kind are
usually prescribed in all the early institutions. (The Illinois
school now has 612 pupils, and the New York schools allow
a term of 17 years.) The first principal of the Kentucky
school went to Hartford for a year to study methods. Ohio
and Virginia soon followed in the good work. Both received
their first superintendents from Hartford. Thereafter insti-
tutions sprang up rapidly in the south and west, taking their
early superintendents or teachers either from the parent
school at Hartford or from one or another of the older
In 1857 there was incorporated by the national congress
the Columbia institution at Washington, D. C, which requires
1 Histories American schools for the Deaf. — American asylum, i: 13.
J77~\ EDUCATION OF DEFECTIVES 9
special mention. Though originally intended as a school
where the deaf children of government beneficiaries could
be educated, circumstances of which not the least influential
was the energy of its principal, Dr. Edward M. Gallaudet,
son of the pioneer, soon brought about a change enabling
the institution to confer collegiate degrees. The institution
was then divided into two departments, the advanced depart-
ment taking the name of the National deaf-mute college.
Thus, in 1864, America had taken a step "unprecedented
in the history of deaf-mute instruction."
Most of the deaf and dumb are either born deaf or
become so before acquiring language. They are dumb
because they are deaf, and without special instruction can
never know any but a gestural language. The pioneer edu-
cators of the deaf in this country were all " broad-minded
men of liberal education," and they set a high standard at
the outset for the work. A language of signs they saw
was the key to the instruction of their pupils, who, indeed,
were allowed so few years of schooling, that no time was to
be lost in laboring over the extraordinary difficulties of
teaching them speech. Moreover, these teachers saw with
great satisfaction the development of their pupils through
the language of signs.
This language is ideographic — " being readily expressive
of ideas and emotions," rather than of phraseology. Put
into words their order is entirely different from the natural
order, thus, " Let it be supposed that a girl has been seen by
a deaf-mute child to drop a cup of milk which she was carry-
ing home. He would relate the incident in the following
order of sign words : Saw-I-girl-walk-cup-milk-carry-home-
drop." 1 The late superintendent of the Illinois institution,
Dr. Gillett, writes : " When reduced to a system they [signs]
form a convenient means of conveying to one mind the ideas
conceived by another, though not clothed in the language
in which a cultured mind expresses them. One addressed
in the sign language receives the idea and translates it into
'Encyclop. Brit, (gth ed.) Am. reprint — Art. Deaf and dumb.
IO EDUCATION OF DEFECTIVES \j7%
English without any intimation of the phraseology in the
mind of the speaker, so that a dozen persons familiar with
the sign language, observing the gesticulations of a speaker,
would each translate correctly the thoughts given forth, but
no two of them would be in exactly the same phraseology.
It is a concrete language, in which the expression of abstract
ideas is exceedingly difficult." * As the ideas are given out
chiefly by means of hand gestures, schools using the sign
language as a means of instruction are said to follow or use
the manual method. 2
Among the manually-taught deaf this language early
becomes the vernacular. As it is a language of living pictures,
such deaf people think in pictures and dream in them. The
sign language is said to be to the deaf what spoken language
is to the hearing ; and yet its use in the school room is deemed
by many teachers extremely detrimental to the acquisition
of the English language, and, therefore, unwise.
All our educators of the deaf agree that giving to their
pupils the ability to use the English language is their chief
end and aim. They differ widely, however, over the use of
signs. The greater number believe a moderate use of them
to be economical of time and extremely useful to the deaf
in the acquisition of knowledge. There is a small but grow-
ing number who dispense with signs in toto just as soon
as possible. These latter teach by the intuitive, direct or
" English language method." They teach English by and
through English, spoken, read and written.
It is extraordinarily difficult to get started by the oral
or English language method. But teachers of this method
claim that once well started their pupils advance more
1 Gillett. Some notable benefactors of the deaf. Pp. 14-15.
2 The simple sign for cat well illustrates the graphic nature of the language. In
order to teach this sign, a sign teacher "would show the child a cat, if possible,
or a picture of a cat, which would be recognized by the child. The next step
would be to direct attention to the cat's whiskers, drawing the thumb and finger
of each hand lightly over them. A similar motion with the thumb and finger of
each hand above the teacher's upper lip at once becomes the sign for cat. The
instructed deaf child will be expected to recall the object, cat, on seeing this con-
ventional sign." Gordon. The difference between the two systems of teaching
deaf-mute children the English language. Pp. 1-2.
779] EDUCATION OF DEFECTIVES II
logically, more surely, more precisely, and finally more
swiftly than the pupils of those permitting the intervention
of signs. Advocates of using the signs together with other
means claim that the minds of most of their new pupils are
sluggish from want of language to think in, and that they
need to be aroused by the quickest method ; that their
pupils have already lost too many years of youth, and that
to cause them to lose more because of a theory is wrong
and wicked. This school asserts that " A large percentage
of the deaf under proper methods can obtain a very use-
ful amount of speech and lip-reading, but [that] there is also
a large percentage of them that would be greatly restricted
in their mental development, if allowed no other means of
instruction," and continues :
" We are striving to take the golden mean, placing first in
importance mental development and a knowledge of written
language, and adding thereto in the case of every child
speech and lip-reading to the degree that his capacity and
adaptability allow him to acquire them." 1
And again, " For rapid and clear explanation, for testing
the comprehension of the pupil, for lectures and religious
instruction before large numbers of pupils, there is no other
means equal in efficiency to the sign language. Its proper
and conservative use always tends to mental development,
saves time, and is the most efficient aid known in the acqui-
sition of written and spoken language." 2
The other school affirms that the two methods or systems
are mutually exclusive, saying : " Of course no pupil can
be taught under the intuitive and the sign method at the
same time, and it is impossible to combine into one system
a method which is dependent upon the ' sign ' language at
every stage of instruction with a method which dispenses
absolutely with the ' sign ' language at every stage in teach-
ing the English language. In the 'sign-language' method
instructors aim to teach the vernacular language through
1 Third Biennial Report American school, p. 12.
2 First Biennial Report American asylum, p. 17.
12 EDUCATION OF DEFECTIVES [780
the intervention of signs, but their deaf-mute pupils acquire
a mixture of natural signs, pantomime, conventional signs
and finger spelling which becomes the habitual vehicle of
thought and expression, wherever it is possible to use a
gestural language, to the exclusion of the English language.
The intuitive method dispenses entirely with the crutch of
the 'sign-language' in the mastery of English." 1
A form of the English language method, taught at the
Rochester (N. Y.) institution, substitutes finger spelling for
signs as these are used in manual schools, and is called the
"manual alphabet method." Superintendent Westervelt
says of it, " It is the principle of our method of instruction
that the child has a right to receive instruction through that
form of our language which he can understand most readily,
with the least strain of attention, and the least diversion
from the thought to the organ of its expression." 2
So much for the rival methods, which, however, it is
absolutely necessary to understand if we would compre-
hend the history of deaf-mute education in America.
The history of the rise of the oral method is interesting.
As has been said, the manual method reigned supreme for
the first fifty years of the work. In 1843, Horace Mann, sec-
retary of the Massachusetts state board of education, and Dr.
Howe, director of the Perkins institution for the blind in
Boston, made a tour of Europe. In his next annual report
Horace Mann praised the oral method as taught in Ger-
many, stating that it was superior to the method employed
in America. The report was widely read, and caused no
little commotion among our teachers of the deaf, several of
whom went abroad to see for themselves. These gentlemen
did not agree with Horace Mann, and little change was then
made in American methods. Still as a result of their recom-
mendations, classes in articulation were introduced into sev-
eral schools. Later, in 1864, the father of a little deaf girl
in Massachusetts began to agitate for the incorporation of an
'Gordon. The Difference between the two systems of teaching, etc., p. 3.
5 Histories of American schools for the deaf, West. New York inst., 2: II.
781] EDUCATION OF DEFECTIVES 1 3
oral school in that state. A small private school of the kind
was soon opened near Boston. In the nick of time — for the
opponents of opening an oral school were active — a Mr.
Clarke of Northampton offered to endow a school for the deaf
in Massachusetts. The project being favored by the governor
of the commonwealth, and by Dr. Howe, who was then sec-
retary of the state board of charities, the legislature incor-
porated in 1867 the Clarke institution at Northampton, which
was opened as an oral school. In the same year a former
teacher of an Austrian school opened in New York what
soon became the New York institution for the improved
instruction of deaf-mutes.
This invasion of the field so long occupied by the silent
method of signs occasioned much controversy. Dr. Edward
M. Gallaudet, president of the Columbia institution, at once
went abroad to examine schools and their methods. Upon
his return he reported that if the whole body of the deaf
were to be restricted to one kind of instruction, he favored
results to be obtained by the manual methods of America ;
but he maintained " the practicability of teaching a large
proportion of the deaf to speak and to read from the lips," 1
and advocated the introduction of articulation into all the
schools of the country. As a result a conference of princi-
pals of American institutions met at Washington, which
adopted resolutions in the line of President Gallaudet's
recommendations. Classes in articulation were then very
During the next few years a gradual movement abroad
towards the abolition of signs was evident ; and at the sec-
ond international conference at Milan, in 1880, an over-
whelming majority of the delegates present voted in favor
of the oral method. Even the French delegates were found
to have abandoned the method that originated with them in
favor of the oral method. At the various conventions of
the American instructors of the deaf, more and more atten-
1 Quoted in Gordon's notes and observations upon the education of the deaf,
14 EDUCATION OF DEFECTIVES [7&2
tion came to be paid to the question of methods. Then,
conventions of articulation teachers were held. In the
meantime Dr. Alexander Graham Bell had introduced to
teachers his father's system of visible speech, a system of
written characters devised to show the position taken and the
movement made by the tongue, teeth, lips, glottis, and other
vocal organs in articulation. A similar but simpler system
of visible speech symbols had been independently worked
out by a Mr. Zera Whipple, of Mystic, Connecticut ; and
more recently the Lyon phonetic manual has been devised,
which is founded on the principle of visible speech and may
be written in the air by the fingers. In 1888 the royal com-
mission of the United Kingdom voted "that every child who
is deaf should have full opportunity of being educated on
the pure oral system," but that those found physically or
mentally disqualified " should be either removed from the
oral department of the school or taught elsewhere on the
sign and manual system." 1 In 1890 the American associa-
tion to promote the teaching of speech to the deaf was incor-
porated, with Dr. Alexander Graham Bell as president. Dr.
Bell immediately endowed the association handsomely.
Ever since Horace Mann stirred up the waters in 1843,.
they have remained in more or less agitation. And this
fact has had a grand effect upon the work. It cannot be
denied that at times the controversy over methods has been
bitter ; to-day, however, it has been reduced to a generous
rivalry, in which the champions of the various methods and
systems are striving with might and main to find out the
best means of instructing the deaf and to pursue it. The
majority of our schools do not limit their teaching to any
one method, but are eclectic, calling themselves " combined
system " schools. Satisfaction with the original uniformity
of method would not have meant progress ; and certainly
the work for the deaf in this land of opportunity has pro-
gressed remarkably. No other country has so many deaf
pupils under instruction as this has, none has provided so
1 Quoted in Gordon's notes and observations, p. xlii.
783] EDUCATION OF DEFECTIVES 1 5
generously for them, and there is none in which their edu-
cators are more alert to test new inventions and appliances
that may bear upon the methods of instruction. And yet,
unquestionably, the education of the deaf is still in its
The early principals saw the need of exchanging ideas,
and soon after the beginning of the work started an organ
of communication. This organ, " The Annals of the deaf,"
is now in its 44th volume. It is a quarterly magazine, 1
conducted under the direction of a committee of the confer-
ence of superintendents and principals of American schools
for the deaf. It is a high-class, much-prized periodical, and
is said to be the leading publication of its kind in the world.
In the pages of the Annals have been published articles on
all manner of questions relating to the deaf. Its editor, Dr.
Edward A. Fay, has made a most thorough investigation
into the results of marriages of the deaf. His data and con-
clusions have appeared in a volume published by the Volta
The Voka bureau is a unique institution. The Volta
prize of 25,000 francs awarded by the French government to
Dr. Bell for his invention of the telephone, he applied to
the founding of a bureau for the purpose of collecting and
diffusing knowledge concerning the deaf. This is the Volta
bureau of Washington, D. C. It has already published a
large number of papers, studies, and books.
The influence of Dr. Bell upon the work for the deaf has
been deep and lasting. The invention of the telephone
itself resulted from his experiments upon a device which he
hoped would enable the deaf to read the vibrations of the
human voice. Though a Scotchman by birth, he is practi-
cally an American, and has devoted his best energies and
his means to furthering the work which he has made his
profession. His great efforts have been towards the promo-
tion of speech-teaching to the deaf.
" The instruction of the deaf is one of the most difficult
1 It now appears six times a year.
16 EDUCATION OF DEFECTIVES [784
fields in the entire department of education for achievement
at once successful and satisfactory to the teacher." * For
many years the parent school at Hartford was parent in the
sense of providing principals and teachers for other schools.
The New York institution has also furnished schools with
many officers and teachers. It is only within comparatively
recent years that normal classes, as such, have come to exist
in a few of the schools. Among others, the Clarke institu-
tion, the Wisconsin phonological institute, the school at
Bala, Pa., and Gallaudet college have them — the latter
announcing that it has opened to a limited number of col-
lege graduates annually, normal fellowships of $500, tenable
for one year. Thus has the standard of deaf-mute teaching
come to be in line with modern university methods of train-
Public day schools for the deaf have sprung up in vari-
ous places. The Horace Mann school of Boston is a nota-
ble example. They fill an unquestioned need, as many
parents refuse to send their deaf children off to an institu-
tion. A still further movement towards decentralization
has come to pass in Wisconsin. Wherever in this state a
few deaf children can be gathered near their homes, state
aid will be given to pay teachers sent there to teach them.
And this movement is tending to become more and more
general. All these day schools spread the oral method.
An important effect of the rise of this method has been the
lowering of the age when deaf children are received, and of
lengthening their term of instruction ; also of largely increas-
ing the number of women teachers employed. The Home
for the training in speech of little deaf children before they
are of school age, at Bala, takes children at the age when
normal children learn to talk and teaches speech by talking
to them and having them talk back as if they heard. There
are several private oral schools for the deaf in this country
where the pupils pay tuition. One of the best is the Wright-
Humason school in New York.
1 Gillett. Some notable benefactors of the deaf, p. 3.
785] EDUCATION OF DEFECTIVES 1 7
With the lowering of the age of pupils, kindergarten
methods have been made use of more and more ; though no
true kindergarten can be conducted in schools where lan-
guage comes so hard and so late, where even natural signs
are arbitrarily interdicted, and where there can be no music.
But the occupations and the games are widely applicable
and are now universally used.
From the above discussion it is seen that the deaf child
comes to school with almost no language to think in, his
only means of expressing his wants being crude natural signs.
Such being the case, the first duty of the teacher is to estab-
lish communication with him and thereafter, during his whole
course at school, more than in any other kind of educational
work, to make language the end of training and other sub-
jects the means of varying language teaching. This state-
ment is strictly true only of elementary education, but then
the majority of deaf pupils do not advance far beyond the
elementary stage ; not because they cannot, for they can,
but because so very much time is absorbed in language work
that their progress in other things is slow ; then, too, parents
are prone to call their boys away from school as soon as
they believe these can help sustain the family. A few of
the brighter and more ambitious pupils from the schools
take the course at the National deaf-mute college, now called
Gallaudet college, where they have "an opportunity to
secure the advantages of a rigid and thorough course
intellectual training in the higher walks of literature and the
liberal arts." Occasionally we hear of deaf pupils taking
high school work in schools with hearing pupils, and eveij
of being graduated from colleges of the hearing.
The course of training at American schools for the deaf
has always been practical. Indeed, industrial training [3
almost essential for those young people who would form
industrious habits and facility in the use of r >ls tha* will
put them on their feet when they enter the world I labor;
for most deaf pupils will have to work lor their living.
Their educators have a magnificent incentive in the knowl-
l8 EDUCATION OF DEFECTIVES [786
edge that the trained deaf are not at all disqualified from
earning a living by simple inability to hear. In their schools
general manual training is followed with a pupil until, for
one reason or another, he chooses his trade or it is chosen
for him. The general equipment for trade teaching is excel-
lent. Printing is an extremely useful occupation for the
deaf, especially in the acquisition of idiomatic language ; and
nearly every institution for their instruction publishes one
or more papers.
Our educated deaf people form a quiet, well-behaved, self-
supporting part of the community. They have formed
local and national societies for mutual benefit. The conven-
tion of the deaf that met in 1893 at the Columbian exposi-
tion at Chicago was the largest meeting of the kind ever
held. Their speeches and deliberations and social gather-
ings occupied several days. That a convention so great and
so remarkable could have been held was a source of great
pride and satisfaction to those engaged in educating the
Within the grounds of Gallaudet college at Washington
stands a beautiful memorial statue of Gallaudet teaching a
little deaf and dumb girl. It was presented to the college
by the deaf of the whole country. In this memorial the
deaf have made fitting recognition of their indebtedness to
When it is stated that prior to 1830 the blind of America
were to be found " moping in hidden corners or degraded
7 the wayside, or vegetating in almshouses," it is the adult
blind that is meant. Still blind children were occasionally
.found in these places, though it could scarcely be said that
they were vegetating, as could be said of the untrained deaf
children. Their ability to hear and speak does not cut off
the blind from the education of communion with friends and
associates, """he needs of the blind, then, were not so evi-
dent 01 so eany forced upon people's attention as were those
of the deaf and dumb children. Blind children were less
787] EDUCATION OF DEFECTIVES 19
often seen than deaf children, for the simple reason that
there were and always are fewer of them. This fact was
not then realized. The British census of 1851 first showed
the world that over 80 per cent of the blind are adults. Our
schools for the blind were started, first, because of the wide-
spread interest in the results of educating the young deaf
and dumb, which furnished inspiration for new fields of
educational endeavor ; secondly, because the country was
coming to the conviction that all the children of the state
should receive education both as a matter of public policy
and as a private right ; and thirdly, because reports of what
had been accomplished abroad in schools for the blind were
being promulgated in our land.
By 1830 the more progressive states of the east were
ready to give their blind children school training. In that
year the government first included in the national census
the deaf and dumb and the blind. The work of the blind
was to begin with scientific foreknowledge as to their
Private ardor to begin the work had been smouldering
for several years, when in 1829 certain gentlemen in Boston
obtained the incorporation of the " New England asylum
for the blind." This was before they had selected either
the pupils or a teacher for them. By a most fortunate cir-
cumstance, the interest and services were obtained of a
graduate of Brown university, Dr. Samuel G. Howe, who
after finishing his medical studies had chivalrously gone to
the aid of the Greeks. This gentleman became the Amer-
ican father and Cadmus of the blind. He went at once to
Europe to study methods of instruction. Upon his return,
in 1832, the school was opened with six pupils. In New
York the act of incorporation of the New York institution
for the blind was passed in 1831 ; but funds were needed
and no one went abroad to study methods. This school
opened in March, 1832, antedating by a few months the
school at Boston. In the very same year a German teacher
of the blind, a Mr. Friedlander, most opportunely came to
20 EDUCATION OF DEFECTIVES [788
Philadelphia, in the hope of starting a school for the blind
there. The way the enterprise was put through is typical
of many other beginnings of special schools in America.
Having trained certain blind children he exhibited their
accomplishments, first, to a few influential people, secondly,
before a large audience among whom he distributed a leaf-
let, " Observations on the instruction of blind persons." A
meeting of public-spirited citizens followed, funds were lib-
erally contributed, fairs held, and the success of the cause
was assured. The Pennsylvania institution for the instruc-
tion of the blind was opened in 1833, fully ten months
before an act of incorporation was obtained.
The three schools at Boston, New York and Philadelphia
are called the pioneer schools. All sprang from private
effort and private funds. All were incorporated as private
institutions, and remain so to this day. Two similar insti-
tutions for the blind have arisen in this country, that at
Baltimore and that at Pittsburg.
The origin of the state schools differs from that of the
type above given only in that classes of trained pupils from
the earlier schools were exhibited before the state legisla-
tures, as well as before the people. State appropriations
followed and the institutions were inaugurated as state insti-
tutions. The new schools sprang into being with astonish-
ing rapidity. There are now in 1899 40 schools for the
blind in the United States, and every state in the union
makes provision for its blind of school age either in its own
school or in that of a neighboring state.
In our sparsely-settled country, especially west of the
Alleghenies and south of Maryland, great efforts had to be
made to find the children and still greater efforts to persuade
the parents to send them to school ; and in many regions
similar conditions of parental ignorance exist to-day. In
certain states where the amount of the public fund seemed
to preclude a special grant for the blind, pupils of this class
were brought together in connection with a school for the
deaf and dumb, forming " dual schools," as they are called.
789] EDUCATION OF DEFECTIVES 21
These institutions could not help being unfair to their blind
contingent ; for in nearly every such case the blind came to
a school already established as a school for the deaf, and
under the superintendence of a man especially interested
in the education of the deaf ; moreover, the number of the
deaf pupils usually far exceeded that of the blind. There
are still a few of these dual schools, but wherever possible
they have been divided into two distinct institutions.
In northern schools the colored blind are educated with
the white ; in southern schools it is best for the colored to
have schools of their own. Both the whites and they prefer
this arrangement. The first school for the colored blind
was opened in North Carolina in 1869.
All the institutions for the blind were in their very incep-
tion schools. The pioneer schools imported literary teach-
ers from Paris and handicraft teachers from Edinburg. At
first only the brighter class of pupils came under instruc-
tion. Teaching them was easy. They progressed with,
amazing - strides ; all was enthusiasm ; exhibitions were called
for and widely given (Dr. Howe's pupils gave exhibitions in
1 7 states) ; large editions of the various annual reports were
exhausted. Soon, however, less bright pupils came to be
admitted ; then the curriculum of studies began to sober
down to the practical and comprehensive one prevailing
to-day. Whatever occupation the boy or girl expects to
follow after leaving school, it is assumed he will follow it
better and thus live more happily and worthily if he has a
general education. When, as was formerly the case, the
period or term of schooling allowed pupils was shorter than
it is now, they were not admitted before the age of eight or
nine. Now that kindergarten departments have been uni-
versally added to the schools, the pupils are urged to enter
at an early age ; because experience has shown that at home
these little blind folks are coddled rather than trained, so
much so in fact that by the time many of them come to
school their natural growth of body and mind has been so
interfered with by inaction, that all the efforts of the schools
22 EDUCATION OF DEFECTIVES [79°
cannot make up for lost time and opportunity. The prin-
ciple of periodicity of growth has now come to be under-
stood and the importance of applying the proper stimulus
at the period most sensitive to it, comprehended. Children
with good sight and hearing have got along without kinder-
garten training, and so have blind children,, but of all the
useful means of reaching and developing the average blind
child none is so effective as the properly-conducted kinder-
garten. It is not easy to overestimate the importance of
hearing as giving the child language and all that this means,
song and the joy it brings and the deep feeling it inspires.
The practical knowledge of things comes to the blind
through the hand, their fingers being veritable projections
of their brains. Thus must their hands not only be trained
to sensitiveness of touch but to be strong and supple, so that
they may, indeed, be dexterous ; for as their hands are so
are their brains. The kindergarten cultivates ear and heart
and hand and brain as nothing else does. Even color is not
wholly omitted in kindergartens for the blind. Many see
colors, and those who do not love to talk about them and
certainly derive some indirect value from considering them.
Kindergartens for the blind may be true kindergartens in
every sense of the word. A kindergartner of fully-sensed
children would miss here only the brightness coming from
the untrammeled ability to run and play and observe all that
sight brings into view, the quick response of " I know," " I
have seen this," and " I have been there." But, then, kin-
dergartens for the blind have as their end and aim this very
arousing of the children and the putting of them in touch
with their surroundings.
Blind children with kindergarten training are more sus-
ceptible to instruction than those without it. Above this
department the course of studies in American schools
requires from seven to eight years, which means a primary,
a grammar and a high school education, or instruction in
object lessons, reading, writing, spelling, grammar, compo-
sition, arithmetic, history, physiology, botany, zoology, geol-
79 1 J EDUCATION OF DEFECTIVES 23
ogy, physics, algebra, geometry, civics, English literature,
typewriting and sometimes Latin and modern languages.
Not a few pupils have fitted for college where they took the
regular course with the seeing students, and from which they
were graduated usually with distinction. Formerly much of
the teaching was oral, which, in many cases, was apt to be
more pleasant than profitable to the pupil. Since the gen-
eral introduction of the embossed text book and tangible
writing, the pupil has been forced to depend more and more
upon himself, obviously with better results. In fact, the
work has been growing more and more practical. The
methods of teaching the blind correspond in general to those
of teaching other hearing children. The common appliances
have but to be raised and enlarged as in maps and diagrams,
or simply made tangible, which may be done, for example,
by notching an ordinary ruler so that the graduations can be
felt. A successful teacher of the seeing readily adapts her-
self to the instruction of the blind. She learns to write
their punctographic systems and to read them with the eye.
Industrial training has been an integral part of the school
course from the beginning. Recently educational manual
training has been generally introduced as preliminary to
the trades. Sloyd has been found especially adapted to
the blind. The handicrafts — chair-caning, hammock-mak-
ing, broom-making, carpet-weaving, and a few others, alone
remain of all the many trades taught at one time or another
in our schools. Manual occupations of some kind will
always be taught, even were it evident that none of them
would be followed by the blind as trades ; for it is by doing
and making that the blind especially learn best. Then, it is
essential that they be kept occupied. They are happier so
and far better off. In the past, before the introduction of
such varieties of labor-saving machinery as the last half
century has seen, many of the discharged pupils followed
some manual trade and succeeded in subsisting by it. To-
day this is less and less possible. The mind itself of the
blind is least trammeled by the lack of sight ; hence some
24 EDUCATION OF DEFECTIVES [792
pursuit where intelligence is the chief factor would seem to
be best adapted to his condition.
Music, of course, opens up his most delightful field. It
is said that all the force of the superintendents of the early
schools was required to prevent the institutions from becom-
ing mere conservatories of music. To-day only those pupils
pursue music in regular course who have talent for it ; but
even those are not allowed to neglect other studies for it.
It is the experience of the American schools as of the
European, that the profession of music offers to the edu-
cated and trained musician who is blind, a field in which he
can work his way with least hindrance from his lack of sight,
and many are they who have found in it a means of liveli-
hood for themselves and their families. A few in nearly
every school fit themselves to be tuners of pianos.
The importance of physical training was early recognized ;
for the blind have less vitality and more feeble constitutions
than the seeing ; besides, those of our pupils who most need
exercise, are least apt to seek it of their own accord. At
first the schools had no gymnasiums ; of late years such
have been pretty generally added, and systematic physical
exercise is carried out.
The American schools for the blind were founded upon
embossed books. Dr. Howe states somewhere that the sim-
ple reading from embossed print did more to establish the
schools in the country than any other one thing. Extraor-
dinary pains were" taken by Dr. Howe and his assistants to
perfect a system which should be at once readily tangible to
the fingers of the blind and legible to the eyes of their
friends. The result was the small lower case letter of Dr.
Howe, the Boston line print, as it is often called. To this
the jury gave preference before all other embossed systems
exhibited at the great exhibition of the industry of all
nations, in London, in 1852. Backed by such indorsement
and all the authority of Dr. Howe the system was rapidly
adopted into the American schools. It was then the theory
that the blind would be further isolated from their friends
793] EDUCATION OF DEFECTIVES 25
if their alphabets were dissimilar. The blind of themselves
had devised a writable system — arbitrary and composed of
dots or points — one which they could both read and write.
But the early superintendents would not countenance it.
However, many of the blind failed to read the line letter
system ; because to read it requires extreme nicety of touch,
which all the blind by no means have. Characters composed
of points not of lines are scientifically adapted to touch read-
ing. In the 33rd report of the New York institution, Supt.
Wm. B. Wait wrote : " Now, which is the more important,
that all the young blind should be able to read, thus being
made, in fact, like the seeing, or that they should be taught
an alphabet which in some sort resembles that used by the see-
ing, but by doing which only 34 percent of them will ever be
able to read with any pleasure or profit ?" This attitude of
the New York school was the outcome of statistics gathered
from seven institutions, in which 664 pupils were involved,
and of experiments made by Mr. Wait with his own pupils,
using a system scientifically devised by him, composed of
points in arbitrary combination. This was in 1868. At
the next convention of the American instructors of the
blind, it was resolved "That the New York horizontal
point alphabet as arranged by Mr. Wait, should be taught
in all institutions for the education of the blind." Not long
afterwards a national printing house was subsidized, from
which the schools obtained free books, both in the point
and in the line systems. In a very few years the point
books were in increasing demand, and to-day most of the
schools prefer them to those in the line print.
The acceptance of the point was due to several things, —
first of all, to its writability and superior tangibility, and
secondly, to the extraordinary energy of a few of its advo-
cates. The old world was a long time accepting a writable
point system. That of Louis Braille, devised in 1829,
though much used by individuals, was not officially adopted
into the Paris school where it originated until 1854. In
contrast, America devised, printed, spread, and resolved to
26 EDUCATION OF DEFECTIVES [794
accept its writable system in less than one-half the time.
The benefits of a tangible writable system are vast. It
puts the blind more nearly on a par with the seeing, particu-
larly as pupils in school. Its adoption here, next to that of
tangible printing, makes obtainable the ideal of American
schools for the blind.
Every tangible system has its defects. French " braille "
as adopted into England has antiquated abbreviations and
contractions for the use of adults ; and is involved with rules
allowing much bad use, like the omission of all capitals.
The New York point as printed also laid itself open to much
criticism as to "good use." The American braille, the latest
system, combining the best features of French braille and of
New York point, was devised by a blind teacher of the Per-
kins institution. It takes full account of " good use," and
those who use the system deem it very satisfactory. In 1892,
when the American braille system was adopted into several
schools, a typewriter for writing braille was invented, and this
was followed by the invention of another machine for embos-
sing braille directly on plates of thin brass from which any
number of duplicates could be struck off on paper. 1 Here
was a means of creating a new library at once. But the chief
value of the invention lay in the fact that as the machine
was simple and inexpensive and could be operated if neces-
sary by a blind man, any institution could have a printing
office of its own. And several schools immediately estab-
lished such offices, from which they issued at once whatever
their school classes demanded. By co-operating in the
selection of the books to be embossed these schools have cre-
ated in the space of seven years a library of books in Ameri-
can braille than which there is no superior in any system in
any country, and they have added an immense amount of
music in the braille music notation, which is the same all over
the world. A typewriter, and a machine for embossing brass
plates in the New York point system, have also appeared.
1 For these inventions, which have been of the greatest recent service to the
education of the blind, the work is indebted to Mr. Frank H. Hall, sup't of the
795J EDUCATION OF DEFECTIVES 2j
The production of books in both point systems is going on
parallelly. Whether this is wise or not it is certainly waste-
ful. And yet the antagonism of the advocates of the rival
systems is so great that the race may continue for some
years yet. The matter is, however, not so " stupid " as it
would seem to be. There is nothing like competition to
eliminate defects and bring out excellences. Moreover,
there has been evolution in systems of ink print as there
has been in systems of embossed print. In either case that
which eventually survives will be the fittest and will be worth
all the trouble it caused to make it survive.
Excellent embossed libraries exist in all three of the sys-
tems. Books in all three may be obtained from the National
printing house for the blind at Louisville, Ky., where many
of the plates have been made and where most of them are
kept. This printing house was subsidized by congress in
1873, and since that time has spent $10,000 annually in the
production of books in the various systems, music scores in
the New York point notation, and tangible apparatus, each
school ordering from the published list, books, etc., to the
value of its quota or part proportional to the number of its
pupils. The printing office of the Perkins institution at
Boston is the largest private enterprise of its kind in the
world. It has been running almost continuously since 1834,
and has put forth a splendid list of books in the Boston line
American generosity to its defectives has not only pro-
vided institutions unsurpassed in their general appointments
elsewhere, but the proverbial American ingenuity has sup-
plied the classrooms with appliances and mechanical aids to
instruction unequaled in any land. The interest in the
work for the blind taken by those actually engaged in it may
be seen by a reading of the annual reports of the superin-
tendents, which have served as a means of communication
among the schools and between these and the public.
France, Germany and Italy have been publishing for many
years, magazines or periodicals in the interest of the blind.
28 EDUCATION OF DEFECTIVES [79^
For four years this country produced " The Mentor," a
monthly which was so excellent and timely that it ought to
have been kept up. However, it was supported but poorly
and was stopped for that reason. America, then, has no
organ of communication among workers for the blind. The
superintendents and teachers engaged in this work first met
in convention in 1853. The Association of American
instructors of the blind was formed in 1871, and has met
biennially ever since, usually as the guest of one or another
of the institutions. The proceedings of each convention
have been published.
The principles underlying the scheme for educating the
blind being to make them as little as possible a class apart
from the rest of the community, it has not been deemed wise
to attempt to establish a national college for the higher edu-
cation of those capable of taking it, but efforts are making
towards enabling the brighter and worthier pupils to attend
one of the colleges for the seeing, at the expense of the
states or the schools from which they come. The school
instruction of the blind is comparatively an easy matter.
The work is less of a science than the more difficult task of
instructing the deaf and dumb. But if we consider the
results, it must be admitted that it is far easier to fit the
intelligent deaf to be self-supporting than it is to fit the
blind to be so. The world of practical affairs is the world
of light ; and if the blind succeed in that world it is cer-
tainly to their credit. And yet we expect them to succeed
in it ; and having given them the best preparation we can
devise, we find that many do succeed, some brilliantly. Just
what proportion "succeed" is not known; for in the vast
areas of our large states the majority go out and are lost to
view. Many — especially the girls — go home to become
helpful in the family, and these live on there as centers of
light and culture, and so what was once deemed a calamity,
may become to the family a blessing in disguise.
In 1878 an exhaustive census of the graduates from all
over the country was compiled. It revealed the following -
79/] EDUCATION OF DEFECTIVES 29
encouraging facts : 16 became superintendents of other insti-
tutions ; 214 became teachers or were otherwise employed
in institutions ; 34 became ministers of the gospel ; 84
authors, publishers or lecturers 1310 were engaged as teachers
of music or were vocalists outside of institutions ; 69 had been
organists in churches; 125 piano tuners; 937 had been
engaged as teachers, employees, and workers in handicraft ;
277 were storekeepers, etc. ; 45 became owners and man-
agers of real estate ; 760 (mostly women) were employed at
housework at home or in families, or at sewing with machines,
or by hand, and 78 were in homes of employment. 1 Fur
ther, according to the 10th census of the United States
(1880) when there were 48,928 blind in the land, but 2,560
were found in almshouses. 2 What proportion of these
ever attended our schools, will never be known, but it must
he remembered that blindness is an affliction of old age.
According to statistics printed in the report for 1879 °f
the New York institution, "More than 1,200 persons have
been instructed, and have gone out from the institutions
for the blind in this state [New York], only 21 of whom
were found to be in almshouses on the 30th of Octo-
ber, 1879. Such facts give great force to a statement made
by the board of state commissioners of public charities upon
this subject. They say : " As observation shows that edu-
cated blind persons seldom become a public charge, it would
seem important, not only in its social bearings, but as a
question of political economy, to bring as many of the blind
as practicable under proper educational training." z
" Obstacles are things to be overcome " is the motto
given by Dr. Howe to the Perkins institution for the blind.
When this remarkable man learned in 1837 that up in the
mountains of New Hampshire there was a little girl not only
'Proceedings fifth bien. conv. of the American association of instructors of the
blind, p. 21.
'Compendium loth census, 2, 1702.
3 Pp. 32-33.
30 EDUCATION OF DEFECTIVES [798
blind but also deaf and dumb, he eagerly sought out the
child and obtained the parents' consent to take her to South
Boston to be educated. He had already formed a theory as
to how he would reach a mind thus doubly shut in, and
with the finding of Laura Bridgman came the wished-for
opportunity to test this theory.
It should be noted that Laura Bridgman saw and heard
until she was two years old. She had been rather a delicate
child, however, having enjoyed only about four months of
robust health, when she sickened, her disease raging with
great violence during five weeks, " when her eyes and ears
were inflamed, suppurated and their contents were dis-
charged." ' Her sufferings continued for months, and it was
not " until four years of age that the poor child's bodily
health seemed restored." 2 She was intelligently active, fol-
lowing her mother about the house, seeming anxious to feel
of everything, and thus to learn about it ; and she devel-
oped signs for her father and her mother, and for some
She was eight years old when brought to the Perkins
institution. Dr. Howe writes : " There was one of two ways
to be adopted : either to go on and build up a language of
signs on the basis of the natural language, which she had
already herself commenced, or to teach her the purely arbi-
trary language in common use ; that is, to give her a sign
for every individual thing, or to give her a knowledge of
letters, by the combination of which she might express her
idea of the existence, and the mode and condition of exist-
ence, of anything. The former would have been easy, but
very ineffectual ; the latter seemed very difficult, but, if
accomplished, very effectual ; I determined, therefore, to try
the latter." 3 After the child had become adjusted to the
change of homes, Dr. Howe began teaching her by means of
common articles with which she was familiar — spoons, forks,
1 From reports of Dr. Howe on Laura Bridgman, appendix C, 48th annual report,
Perkins institution for the blind, p. 160.
'Same source and page.
8 Same source, pp. 162-3.
799] EDUCATION OF DEFECTIVES 3 1
keys, etc., on which labels with their names printed in raised
letters had been pasted. Similar detached labels were given
her to feel. Her touch was acute enough, hence she was
able to match labels, placing that for book on the book, etc.
She did this easily and willingly because she received appro-
bation for so doing ; but the idea that the printed word
stood for the name of the object had not entered her brain.
Then other detached labels were cut up into their component
letters. These her memory soon enabled her to build into
wholes or the words she had felt. Such exercises continued
for many weeks to be only a meaningless play to the poor
child. The success had been " about as great as teaching a
very knowing dog," when suddenly the idea flashed upon
her that " Here was a way by which she herself could make
up a sign for anything that was in her own mind, and show
it to another mind, and at once her countenance lighted up
with a human expression ; it was no longer a dog or parrot,
— it was an immortal spirit, eagerly seizing upon a new
link of union with other spirits ! I could almost fix upon
the moment when this truth dawned upon her mind, and
spread its light to her countenance ; I saw that the great
obstacle was overcome, and that henceforward nothing but
patient and persevering, plain and straightforward efforts
were to be used." '
Next, she was given metal type each bearing some
embossed letter, and a frame with holes to receive them.
With this appliance Laura readily wrote the name of any
object she knew and by writing them fixed in mind an
extensive vocabulary of common names. Then the less
cumbrous manual alphabet was taught her. Here was a
means by which she could both write and read ; she could
spell to her teacher and read what her teacher spelled into
Dr. Howe's reports teem with interesting psychologic
material. At the end of the year he writes : " She is nine
years of age, and yet her knowledge of language is not
1 Same source, p. 164.
32 EDUCATION OF DEFECTIVES [8oO
greater than a common child of three years. There has
been no difficulty in communicating knowledge of facts,
positive qualities of bodies, numbers, etc. ; but the words
expressive of tliem, which other children learn by hearing,
as they learn to talk, must all be communicated to Laura by
a circuitous and tedious method. In all the knowledge
which is acquired by the perceptive faculties, she is of course
backward ; because, previous to her coming here, her per-
ceptive faculties were probably less exercised in one week
than those of common children are in one hour." 1
And so her instruction went on. Through it all the child
showed, an eagerness to learn and to put herself in touch
with the world that was a powerful aid to the teacher. In
a few years, when Oliver Caswell, also deaf, dumb, and
blind, came to the institution, Laura naturally took great
interest in teaching him, and thereby profited much herself.
As she approached womanhood her education was already
good. Laura had learned to sew, to knit, and to do fancy
work, and so employed her time when not reading or con-
versing with her many friends. She often visited her home
but her true home was the institution. There she lived to
her 6oth year and there she died, the first case of any one
so afflicted made capable of leading an industrious and
happy life, and as the first case, historically the most
Popular interest in Laura Bridgman, both in this country
and abroad, was naturally very great. The printed reports
of her progress which were eagerly awaited were as eagerly
absorbed. Distinguished foreigners coming to Boston
visited her. Charles Dickens wrote in his American notes
a sympathetic account of his impressions of her. Naturally
enough in succeeding cases of the deaf-blind that from time
to time came under instruction in one school or another,
much less interest was shown. The way to give liberty to
the imprisoned mind had been made plain.
In the year 1887, however, something like the old interest
1 Same source, p. 167.
8oi] EDUCATION OF DEFECTIVES 33
was aroused by the publication of accounts of the brilliant
deaf, dumb, and blind child in Alabama, Helen Keller.
This child had lost sight and hearing at 19 months as a
result of a serious illness. Like Laura she kept actively
interested in all that surrounded her, and like Laura she
developed her own little language of signs. When she was
six years old, her friends, who knew of Laura Bridgman's
case, applied to Boston for a teacher. In the following
year Miss Annie M. Sullivan was sent. This lady was
able to put herself in touch with Helen in a very short time
and in a marvelous way. In fact, she has proved herself to
be a most remarkable teacher. Following in general the
methods adopted in teaching Laura, Miss Sullivan began
her work by putting Helen in possession of the manual
alphabet. A doll was happily chosen to begin with ; and
with the doll on the child's lap, the teacher formed in Helen's
hand the finger letters d-o-l-l. Other familiar objects were
similarly introduced, and strange as it may seem, that which
had taken three months to reach in Laura's case in Helen's
took but a few days j 1 or, in Miss Sullivan's words, "it was
more than a week before she understood that all things were
thus identified." 2 Her teacher writes : " Never did a child
apply herself more joyfully to any task than did Helen to
the acquisition of new words. In a few days she had mas-
tered the manual alphabet and learned upwards of a hundred
names." 3 After teaching verbs and prepositions through
action and position Miss Sullivan made a departure. She
began to use new words in connection with old words, let-
ting Helen understand them if possible from the context.
The child adopted these words " often without inquiry." In
this way she became familiar with the use of many words
whose meaning never had to be explained to her.
As to the letters of the raised alphabet, Miss Sullivan
writes : " Incredible as it may seem, she learned all the let-
1 See 56th an. rep. Perkins inst. for the blind, p. 82.
* Same source, p. 101.
3 Same source, p. 101.
34 EDUCATION OF DEFECTIVES [8o2
ters both capital and small in one day." 1 Then came the
primer ; then pencil writing than which there is scarcely a
more difficult exercise for the blind to learn ; and yet Helen
"wrote without assistance a correctly spelled and legible
letter to one of her cousins ; and this was only a little more
than a month after her first lesson in chirography." 2 Braille,
or tangible point writing, became a constant delight to her.
Words like perhaps and suppose and those indicative of
abstract ideas she learned more through association and
repetition than through any explanation of her teacher.
The child had the language sense largely developed. Much
of the time when no one was talking with her she was read-
ing in books printed in raised letters. Dr. Bell in trying to
account for Helen's wonderful familiarity with idiomatic
English, considers of great significance the statement of
Miss Sullivan that, "long before she could read them [the
books] . . . she would amuse herself for hours each
day in carefully passing her fingers over the words, search-
ing for such words as she knew." 3
In 1888, when Helen was 8 years old her teacher took her
to South Boston where she could have the advantage of all
the appliances and embossed books that a school for the
blind affords. Thenceforth an account of her progress
reads like a romance. It was no more difficult for her to
learn a new word in German or in Greek than in English ;
and she took great delight in picking up and using French
or Greek phrases. And when later she came to study these
languages, she seemed to advance without effort in the
knowledge of them.
The educators of the deaf, who have good reason to com-
prehend the exceeding difficulty of teaching their pupils to
articulate intelligibly, feel that Helen Keller's rapid mastery
of speech is by all odds her most wonderful achievement.
After she had been in South Boston some little time she
heard of a Swedish girl afflicted like herself, who had learned
1 Same source, p. 103.
2 Same source, p. 104.
3 Amer. annals of the deaf, April, 1892, p. 134.
803] EDUCATION OF DEFECTIVES 35
to speak, and she said, " I must learn to speak." Miss Sul-
livan took her to Miss Sarah Fuller, principal of the Horace
Mann school for the deaf, and though Helen's only means
of learning the position of the vocal organs in speech was
to put her fingers on the lips, tongue, teeth, and throat of
the speaker, she learned in ten lessons 1 to articulate so well
that she could carry on an intelligible and audible conver-
sation, having communication addressed to her spelled into
her hand by the manual alphabet. She has learned since
that time to read from the lips and throat of a speaker by
placing her fingers lightly on them ; so that any one sitting
near her can converse with her just as though she could both
hear and see. She spent a winter at the Wright-Huma-
son private school for the deaf, where she improved her
When Helen was sixteen years old she entered the Cam-
bridge school for girls, Miss Sullivan accompanying her.
There, under the guidance of Mr. Arthur Gilman, the
director of the school, she took the course preparatory to
entering Radcliffe college. At the end of one year she took
the regular required examinations in the history of Greece
and Rome, in English, in Latin, in elementary French, in
elementary German, and in advanced German. As the
questions and other matter were read into her hand by Mr.
Gilman himself, Helen wrote her answers and translations
on an ordinary typewriter. Her papers were read by the
regular examiners. She passed the tests in every subject,
taking " honors " in English and German. Mr. Gilman
writes : " I think that I may say that no candidate in Har-
vard or Radcliffe college was graded higher than Helen in
There are still other children afflicted like Helen who are
doing splendid work, but, "taking this child all in all," says
Dr. Job Williams, principal of the American school for the
1 See Sarah Fuller's article How Helen Keller learned to speak, Annals of the
deaf, Jan. 1892, p. 26.
2 Miss Helen Adams Keller's first year of college preparatory work. American
Annals of the Deaf, November, 1897.
36 EDUCATION OF DEFECTIVES [804
deaf at Hartford, " and making due allowance for every pos-
sible aid that has been given her, and for all unconscious
exaggeration due to friendly admiration, there yet remains
so much that is marvelous as to place her beyond compari-
son with any other child of whom we have ever heard. The
whole history of literature reveals nothing equal to her lan-
guage productions from one of her years, even among those
possessed of all their faculties. She is a genius, a prodigy,
a phenomenon." x
The other deaf-blind children under instruction are some
at schools for the blind, some at schools for the deaf. They
must always have a special teacher, and use embossed books
and adapted appliances. All are being taught on principles
used in teaching Helen. In South Boston, where there are
several, they attend classes with other pupils, the special
teacher acting simply as interpreter and companion.
The term feeble-minded is now used to embrace all classes
and grades of the mentally defective, excepting the insane,
who, properly speaking, are mentally sick. Idiocy was the
term formerly used to cover the same range. Idiocy or feeble-
mindedness may be defined as " mental deficiency depend-
ing upon imperfect development, or disease of the nervous
system, occurring before, at or after birth, previous to the
evolution of the mental faculties." 2 At the time the feeble-
minded were first taught, it was supposed that their growth
of body and mind, which was seen to be but partial, had
simply been stopped by malign influences, and that in many
cases all that was needed was proper environment in order to
start the growth again ; it was hoped that the improvable
cases at least could be educated and trained to approach in
capacity the normal-minded individual.
With the end in view of so educating idiots, as they called
them, the first attempts to train them in this country were
1 Annals of the deaf, April, 1892, p. 159.
8 Quoted in Fernald's Feeble-minded children, p. 2.
805] EDUCATION OF DEFECTIVES 37
made in 1848. Before then idiots who were not kept at
home were to be found in almshouses or in insane asylums,
where they were sadly out of place. Kind-hearted physicians
who saw this "rubbish of humanity" cowering in terror
before lunatics or abused by almshouse associates, agitated
for their relief, care, and training. The movement began in
New York and Massachusetts in the year 1846. Massachu-
setts was more ripe for the work ; for the matter had no
sooner been presented to the legislature than this body
appointed a commission to report upon the number, condi-
tion, and the best means of relieving the idiots in the com-
monwealth. Dr. Samuel G. Howe, the director of the Per-
kins institution for the blind, was made chairman of the
commission. Its report made in 1848, and widely known as
" Dr. Howe's report on idiocy," was exhaustive, and ended
by recommending the opening of an experimental school.
One was opened at the expense of the state and under the
guidance of Dr. Howe himself. The results were so favor-
able that in three years' time the state doubled its appropri-
ation, and founded in South Boston the Massachusetts
school for idiots, the first state school for them. The state
of New York followed, establishing its school similarly, or
experimentally, in 1851, and permanently in 1853.
Between the appointment of the Massachusetts commis-
sion and its report, a country physician, Dr. H. B. Wilbur,
had opened a small private school for idiots at Barre, Mass.,
really the first school of its kind in America. Dr. Wilbur
was soon called to take charge of the New York state school.
The Pennsylvania school followed in 1852, and was estab-
lished in Philadelphia as a private corporation in 1853 ; then
in 1857 came the Ohio state institution at Columbus; in
1858 the semi-public school in Lakeville, Conn. ; the Ken-
tucky state school at Frankfort in i860; the Illinois state
school in 1865 ; the Hillside home, a private school at Fay-
ville, Mass., in 1870. "Thus up to 1874, twenty-six years
after this work was begun in America, public institutions
for the feeble-minded had been established in seven states.
38 EDUCATION OF DEFECTIVES [806
These institutions then had under training a total of 1,041
pupils. There were also two private institutions in Massa-
chusetts, . . . with a total of 69 inmates." T Applica-
tions for admittance were numerous and pressing. At first
it was the theory that only imbeciles,- the improvable idiots,
should be taken into the institution, that the institution
should be a school and should graduate its pupils into the
world. Still, it was but a few years before most of the
superintendents recognized that the pupils would always be
children though adult in years ; and that as children they
needed guidance and protection always ; that for obvious
reasons girls and women of child-bearing age should not be
discharged — for no girl is so exposed as the simple, weak-
willed, feeble-minded girl — and finally that practically all
cases would have to be retained within the protection of the
institution. Physiology and pathology now teach that " men-
tal deficiency generally, if not always, is the result of a defi-
nite cerebral abnormality or defect, or the result of actual dis-
ease or damage to some part of the central nervous system ;" 2
that feeble-mindedness is practically a permanent condition,
and that it cannot be cured. From the time this fact came
to be realized the institutions began to change in character
There arose two distinct departments — the training school
and the asylum.
The school was, is, and ought to be the fundamentally
important department. Education is just as much a right
of the improvable imbecile or feeble-minded child as it is of
any child ; and what are always acknowledged to be the
benefits of an education are no less benefits to the one than
to the other. It is in the school that the feeble-minded
child is to be aroused, developed and trained to lead a use-
ful and a happy life. The aim in the education of an ordi-
nary child is to give a liberal all-round training, fitting him
for anything in life he may choose to take up. With our
feeble-minded child the aim of his education, which is to
1 Fernald, The history of the treatment of the feeble-minded, p. 8.
2 Fernald, Feeble-minded children, p. 2.
807] EDUCATION OF DEFECTIVES 39
lead a useful life within the institution, is kept ever in mind.
He is happiest when occupied. Hence, his education is
principally a practical education. The difference between a
normal person and a feeble-minded person after training is
that the latter has no initiative, no power to resist the seduc-
tion of stronger minds. He may be useful and even self-
supporting, but he can become so only under guidance and
When they come to school these children have extremely
weak will power. In fact the feeble-minded as a class have
been divided according to the attention, thus :
" 1. Absolute idiocy. Complete absence and impossibility
" 2. Simple idiocy. Attention feeble and difficult.
"3. Imbecility. Instability of attention." 1
With all these the condition of the hand indicates that of
the brain. The "idiotic hand" is proverbial. Many imbe-
ciles see but do not perceive ; hear but do not understand.
They rarely make a purposive effort, but need to be directed
in everything. When it is comprehended that though they
love games they do not even play of their own accord, it
will be understood how their teachers must begin at the very
bottom rung in the ladder of education. The special senses
of seeing, hearing, and feeling, actually have to be aroused
and developed, first, as simple physiological functions ; sec-
ondly, as intellectual faculties. Calisthenics in classes,
marching to music, military drill — movements and exercises
of all kinds — exert a most salutary and energizing influ-
ence, and are in great use in all the schools.
The normal child does not need to be taught each step ;
his power of attention, his will, his desire, his originality
enable him to fill the gaps in instruction from his own daily
experiences. In fact he often learns more out of school
than in. On the contrary, the feeble-minded child has to be
taught each step, hence, his education is extremely slow.
1 Sollier: Psychologie de l'idiot et l'imbecile, Paris, 1891. Quoted from G. E.
Johnson, Pedagogical seminary, 3, 246.
40 EDUCATION OF DEFECTIVES [808
The simple occupations of the kindergarten fit these chil-
dren of eight to twelve years of age as they do bright
children of four and five. The teacher devises all manner
of busy work for them, generally using coarse materials ;
the stringing of spools ; beads ; buttons ; spool-knitting ;
plain knitting ; braiding with broad leather strips, with shoe-
strings, with straw ; and block building from the simple
cube to the forms that are more complex.
No instruction is in more general use and is more helpful
to the children than that of the kindergarten. After this
all their education continues on a very elementary plane
beyond which it is impossible for them to go. Many learn
reading, writing, and arithmetic. The brightest read simple
stories with pleasure, and go as far in arithmetic as multi-
plication. Division is beyond them. 1 Calculation in the
abstract they cannot master. The greater part of their edu-
cation is, therefore, of a purely practical kind. They are
taught a good deal of fancy work, like knitting, crocheting,
embroidery and lace-making ; but chiefly domestic work,
sewing, washing and ironing, baking, farming, housepaint-
ing, shoemaking, brushmaking, etc.
Entertainments flourish at these institutions. One is got
up on every possible occasion ; and the " men and women
children" are always present. No discrimination as to age
or capacity is permitted. Happiness prevails because, in
direct contrast with what happens in the world, the simple
are not scoffed at and driven to a corner, but are made to
feel that they are as good as any one.
The institution is a small community. It must have a
given number of employees, one or more to each section or
department. But the stronger grown up children do the
bulk of the work : baking, laundry work, shoemaking, sew-
ing, mending, dressmaking and tailoring. Each institution
aims to have as many acres of land as it has children, and
on the grounds a barn, cattle, horses and all the parapher-
nalia of a farm. This farm is worked by the boys, their
1 See Fernald. Feeble-minded children, p. 14.
809] EDUCATION OF DEFECTIVES 4 1
cows producing all the milk the institution can consume,
and the farm hands raising all their own vegetables and
fruit, selling what they cannot store. By utilizing the ener-
gies of the pupils in profitable labor the average per capita
expense may be reduced to $125 or $150 a year. Supt.
Doren of the Columbus institution has said that if the state
will provide him 1,000 acres of good land he will care for
all the custodial cases in Ohio free of expense to the state.
When an old school has moved to a new site as the Massa-
chusetts school has recently done, the labor of the boys has
been utilized in clearing the land and ditching it, in building
the roads, etc. Where the grounds contain suitable clay soil,
as at Fort Wayne, Indiana, the boys have made the bricks
with which to build new structures as needed. But in all
this care is taken that there is no overwork. The work of
an average laboring man more than supports himself — it is
generally reckoned to support three people. If the feeble-
minded man does one-half or one-third of a man's work, and
does it every day, his support costs only that which will pay
for his superintendence and care.
The lowest cases of the unimprovable idiots, whom nearly
all the institutions have been forced to admit, are termed
the "custodial cases," and are kept by themselves. They
are profoundly helpless, can neither speak nor attend to
their bodily wants, but must be cared for like babies which
they are. However, they must be attended to — washed,
fed, and kept as decent as may be. Attendants willing to
do this work are not easily found. But trained feeble-
minded girls are delighted and flattered at the privilege of
taking care of those more helpless than themselves. And
it has been found that they make the best attendants for
So far, then, as methods of instruction go, American
teachers have but broadened the physiological methods of
the Frenchman, Seguin. The distinctive results of our
schools lie in training the pupils to be helpful, especially in
the way of labor for the institution which harbors them.
42 EDUCATION OF DEFECTIVES [8lO
A distinctive result of work for the feeble-minded has
been the gathering of statistics of causes. It has been
known that a very large percentage of cases, variously
estimated from 50 per cent to 70 per cent, are of con-
genital origin ; that of all classes of defectives the feeble-
minded most surely tend to transmit their defect ; hence,
that the feeble-minded must be sequestrated for life. It has
been shown that there is a strange but strong correlation
between the forms of degeneracy, i. e., the criminal, the
inebriate, the prostitute, and the feeble-minded. Of late
years the energies of charitable and sociologic organizations
" Have turned towards combating the causes of degeneracy,
thereby protecting posterity." 1 The United States census
for 1890 gives in round numbers 95,000 feeble-minded and
this number is undoubtedly short of the actual number.
Still but one-twelfth or about 8,000 of those returned in
the census are cared for in special institutions. Here is
a terrible problem ahead for the sociologists to work out.
Those who have most thoroughly studied the feeble-minded
are convinced that, as prevention is cheaper than cure, so
the gathering of all this vast army into institutions and
especially colonies where fifty per cent of them can be taught
to be at least partly self-supporting, and where their multi-
plication can be cut off, is, by all odds, the most economical
and the best policy for the states to pursue in the future.
It should not be forgotten that for every idiot cared for we
restore at least one productive person to the community ;
some writers say more than one. The whole matter is
receiving widespread and intelligent attention. A large
number of our colleges offer courses in practical sociology,
and the number of students taking these courses is con-
The work for the feeble-minded is considered by those in
it as being still in a tentative stage. Nearly all the superin-
tendents are physicians ; they do not agree on the different
questions involved. They meet regularly in convention, and
1 Powell, Care of the feeble-minded, p. 10.
8ll] EDUCATION OF DEFECTIVES 43
have an organ of communication, called " The Journal of
As the methods of teaching the feeble-minded and the
other defective classes have become understood, they have
modified the old methods of teaching children of normal
intelligence. Child study is now interesting teachers, and
already has led to the sending of many feeble-minded chil-
dren to special schools for their training. The city of
Providence, R. I., has recently led the way in a new move-
ment, that of teaching in special classes the dull or back-
ward pupils of the public schools. The movement is slowly
spreading elsewhere, and, in justice both to the dull and the
bright children, is of inestimable value, and, as such, is a
hopeful sign of the times. 1
American annals of the deaf. Washington, D. C.
Arnold, Thos. The education of the deaf and dumb. London,
The languages of the senses. Margate, 1894.
Bell, A. G. Condition of articulation teaching in American schools
for the deaf. Boston, 1893.
Deaf-mute instruction in relation to the public schools. Volta
Education of the deaf. The little deaf child, vol. 2, no. 2,
Growth of the oral method of instructing the deaf. Boston,
Bell, A. M. English visible speech. Volta bureau, 1899.
Clarke institution. Addresses at the 25th anniversary of. North-
Encyclopaedia Brittanica. Art. deaf and dumb.
•Note: A very radical experiment is being tried, particularly at the Kansas
institution. The operation of castration has been performed on several boys,
after which they have been found to be so improved that some were transferred
from the custodial to the school department, some sent home.
9 The bibliographies here printed constitute but a small part of what might be
44 EDUCATION OF DEFECTIVES [8 1 2
Fay, E. A. Index to American annals of the deaf. Vols. 31-40
(1886-1895), and previous indexes.
Marriages of the deaf in America. Volta bureau, 1898.
Gallaudet, E. M. The combined system of educating the deaf.
Volta bureau, 1891.
The deaf and their possibilities. Chicago, 1898.
Values in the education of the deaf. Colorado Springs, Col.,
Gillett, P. G. Some notable benefactors of the deaf. Rochester,
N. Y., 1896.
Gordon, J. C. The education of the deaf, being evidence of Drs.
Gallaudet and Bell, presented to the royal commission of Great
Britain. Volta bureau, 1892.
Notes and observations on the education of the deaf. Volta
The difference between the two systems of teaching deaf-mute
children the English language. Volta bureau, 1898.
Green, Francis. Vox oculis subjecta, part 1. Boston, 1897.
Histories of American schools for the deaf. 3 vols. Volta bureau,
Hubbard, G. G. The story of the rise of the oral method in
America. Washington, 1898.
Johns, Rev. B. G. The land of silence and the land of darkness.
Kitto, John. The lost senses. New York, 1852.
Mann, Horace. Life and works of. 3:244. Boston, 1891.
Proceedings of American association to promote the teaching
of speech to the deaf.
Proceedings of conferences of principals and superintendents of
Proceedings of conventions of American instructors of the deaf.
Reports of American institutions for the deaf.
Seguin, E. Education of the deaf and mute, in report on educa-
tion. Milwaukee, 1880.
Anagnos, M. Education of the blind. Boston, 1882.
Armitage, T. R. Education and employment of the blind.
813] EDUCATION OF DEFECTIVES 45
Cary, T. G. Memoir of Thomas Handasyd Perkins. Boston,
Diderot. An essay on blindness. London reprints, 1895.
Education of the blind, from " The North American Review,"
Encyclopaedia Brittanica. Art. The blind.
Hauy, V. An essay on the education of the blind. London
Howe, Julia Ward. Memoir of Dr. S. G. Howe, Boston, 1877.
Howe, S. G. 43 annual reports of the Perkins institution. 1833-
Jubilee celebration, Yorkshire school for the blind. London,
Kitto, John. The lost senses. New York, 1852.
Mell, A. Encyclopadisches Handbuch des Blinden-wesens. Wien
und Leipzig, 1899.
Prescott, W. H. The blind, in " biographical and critical essays."
Report of the conference of the blind and their friends. Royal
normal college, July, 1890.
Reports of the biennial conventions of American instructors of
Reports of American institutions for the instruction of the
Robinson, E. B. F. The true sphere of the blind. Toronto,
Rutherford, John. William Moon and his work for the blind.
Sizeranne, M. de la. Les Aveugles par un Aveugle. Paris, 1891.
Sturgis, Dinah. The kindergarten for the blind. New England
magazine, December, 1895, p. 433.
The Mentor. Boston, 1891-94.
Wickersham, J. P. History of education in Pennsylvania. Lan-
caster, Pa., 1886.
The deaf -blind
Anagnos, M. Helen Keller; a second Laura Bridgman. Boston,
Reports of the Perkins institution. 1887-98.
46 EDUCATION OF DEFECTIVES [8 1 4
Chamberlain, J. E. Helen Keller, as she really is. Annals of the
deaf, June, 1899, pp. 286-301.
Chappell, Jennie. Always happy, or the story of Helen Keller.
Fuller, Sarah. How Helen Keller learned to speak. Annals of
the deaf, Jan. 1892, p. 23.
Dickens, C. An account of the Institution for the blind at Boston.
'American Notes," vol. 1. London, 1842.
Gilman, A. Miss Helen Adams Keller's first year of college pre-
paratory work. Volta bureau, 1897.
Hall, G. S. Laura Bridgman, from "Aspects of German culture."
Howe, S. G. Education of Laura Bridgman; extracts from reports
of. Boston, 1890.
Lamson, Mary S. Life and education of Laura Dewey Bridg-
man. Boston, 1878.
Sullivan, Annie M. How Helen Keller acquired language.
Annals of the deaf, April, 1892, p. 127.
The language of the deaf-blind. Annals of the deaf, April,
1899, p. 218.
Association of medical officers of American institutions for idiotic
and feeble-minded persons. Proceedings, 1876-98.
Barr, M. W. Children of a day. Phila., 1896.
. Mental defectives and the social welfare. Popular science
monthly, April, 1899.
Doren, G. A. Our defective classes. Columbus, O., 1897.
Fernald, W. E. Feeble-minded children. Boston, 1897.
. The history of the treatment of the feeble-minded. Bos-
Henderson, C. R. Dependent, defective and delinquent children.
Howe, S. G. Report on idiocy. Boston, 1850.
Indiana bulletin of charities and correction. Indianapolis, 1898.
Johnson, Alexander. Concerning a form of degeneracy. Amer-
ican journal of sociology, November, 1898.
. The mother-state and her weaker children. Boston, 1897.
EDUCATION OF DEFECTIVES
Johnson, G. E. Contribution to the psychology and pedagogy
of feeble-minded children. Pedagogical seminary, 3 : 246.
Kerlin, Isaac N. Feeble-minded children. West Chester, Pa.,
. The mind unveiled. Philadelphia, 1858.
Powell, F. M. Care of the feeble-minded. Boston, 1898.
Psycho-Asthenics, journal of. Faribault, Minn.
Report of 10th anniversary and annual meeting of the associa-
tion of the New Jersey training school for feeble-minded
children. Vineland, 1898.
Reports of commissioner of education. Washington, D. C.
Reports of institutions for the feeble-minded throughout the
Seguin, E. Education of idiots and feeble-minded children from
report on education. Milwaukee, 1880.
. Idiocy and its treatment by the physiological method.
New York, 1870.
Shuttleworth, G. E. Mentally deficient children. London, 1895.
Sollier, Paul. Psychologie de l'idiot et de l'imbecile. Paris, 1891.
Tuke, D. Hack. Modes of providing for the insane and idiots in
the United States and Great Britain. Medical rec, 1887.
Warner, A. G. American charities. A study in philanthropy
and economics. Crowell & Co., pub.
Wilbur, W. B. Suggestions on principles and methods of ele-
mentary instruction. Albany, 1862.
Statistics of schools for defective classes
Compiled from report commissioner of education 1896-77, 2:2335-60
Volumes in library
Value of scientific apparatus
Value of grounds and build
$6 183 538
9 39 1
$2 461 402
$1; 373 873
$i 362 791
$4 63: 917
EDUCATION OF DEFECTIVES
Public schools for the deaf
From report of commissioner of education, 1896-97, 2 : 2346-9
D. C. Kendall school.
North Dakota. .
Pennsylvania . .
Pennsylvania . .
Pennsylvania . .
Pennsylvania . .
Rhode Island. .
South Dakota. .
Washington . . .
West Virginia. .
Colorado Springs. ....
904 Lexington ave., New
Washington Heights. . .
Mt. Airy, Philadelphia...
Providence . .
Austin, colored d. and b. .
of lands and
1 000 000
59 6 50
1 10 645
1 6 250
1 17 288
1 21 000
1 25 737
1 Includes the blind.
8i 7 ]
EDUCATION OF DEFECTIVES
Public day schools for the deaf
From report of the commissioner of education, 1896-97, 2 : 2350.
of land and
Chicago (six schools) ....
Private schools for the deaf
From report of the commissioner of education, 1896-97, 2:2351.
Connecticut . .
New Mexico. .
New York. . . .
New York. .. .
Wisconsin. . . .
Chicago (three schools)
St. Louis (two schools) .
EDUCATION OF DEFECTIVES
[8 1 8
Schools for the blind
From report of commissioner of education, 1896-97, 2 : 2340-I.
Maryland colored b. and d.
North Carolina. ...
Texas colored b. and d. . . .
Colorado Springs ,
St. Augustine. . . .
Nebraska City. . .
1 State grant.
8i 9 ]
EDUCATION OF DEFECTIVES
Public institutions for the feeble-minded
From Powell : Proceedings of the 24th national conference of charities cor-
rection, 1897, p. 290
New York :
New Jersey :
Waltham .. .
Faribault . .
Beatrice . . .
Newark . . .
New York .
Vineland .. .
Vineland .. .
W 4 -
1 From report of the commissioner of education, 1896-07, 2 : 2353-4.
Private schools for the feeble-minded
From report of the commissioner of education, 1896-97, 2 : 2355.
Connecticut . .
New Jersey. . .
New Jersey. . .
New Jersey. . .
Lakeville ,. . ,
Amherst . . .
Fayville. . . .
Cranbury. . .
Allen, Edward A.
EDUCATION OF DEFECTIVES.
'""ion of defectives.
■ &( . <». / ■